Joba Chamberlain likely isn't going to be a Yankee next season. He also isn’t likely going to any other team this season, especially since his trade value isn’t likely to be much should GM Brian Cashman decide to dangle him in a potential deal for some hitting reinforcement.
Chamberlain had another poor outing for the Yankees in the seventh inning of Wednesday night's 8-5 loss to the Rangers and that loomed even larger when Ichiro hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the frame.
It was so bad that he was booed off the mound and that one fan sitting behind home plate could be heard yelling, "two, four, six, eight, Joba (stinks)."
That came after he allowed a two-run home run to Nelson Cruz on a first-pitch hanging curveball as part of an outing that saw him give up a season-high four runs. He has allowed 10 of his 13 earned runs since returning from the DL in late-May.
”I know I (stink) right now, there’s no getting around it,” Chamberlain said. “You got to figure out what you can do to make it better. Obviously do what you’ve done to get prepared for the game and just find some little things that you can try to work on.”
Chamberlain said that he would look at film and see what he’s doing, though he suspects that drifting open, a common problem for struggling pitches is a cause for poor outings like Wednesday
“I’d boo too,” Chamberlain said. “I’m terrible right now, there’s no getting around it. It’s one of those things if you don’t do your job you expect to get booed.”
Despite the recent run of poor outings, manager Joe Girardi is still confident in the 27-year-old who burst upon the scene in 2007 to help the Yankees make a mad dash to the postseason.
However, despite the optimism, Girardi isn’t sure how to fix this.
“I don’t know,” Girardi said. “Somehow we have to find a way to get going. This guy needs to help us. To me his stuff is too good not to help us but right now he’s making mistakes.”
It was the capper on a gloomy day for the Yankees, one that began with the reality that Mark Teixeira’s next swing won’t take place until Spring Training 2014. The day continued with Cashman apologizing for telling Alex Rodriguez to shut the 'blank up' in an interview with ESPN New York after the third baseman went off message on Twitter.
If those news items weren’t appetizing enough for Yankees fans, the start of the main course wasn’t much to enjoy as Andy Pettitte dropped his third straight decision, laboring at times during six innings.
Along the way, Pettitte nearly injured himself, colliding with Jayson Nix trying to field an infield single by Leonys Martin in the third inning.
Both players went to field the ball but neither player communicated who actually was going to get it and Pettitte went down.
Trainer Steve Donohue came out along with Joe Girardi and Pettitte seemed to indicate he was fine. At least he was physically, because of the rest of the third hardly unfolded well.
Pettitte loaded the bases when Nix made a throwing error on a sacrifice attempt by Elvis Andrus. Then he got beat by Adrian Beltre and A.J. Pierzynski, who roped two-run doubles.
Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @larryfleisher